THE Government has failed to secure the blessing of China over new appointments to the Airport Consultative Committee (ACC). At the beginning of the ACC's new term yesterday, Wong Po-yan was retained as chairman along with 47 serving members. The Government is still exchanging views with the Chinese side on the appointments. The Secretary to the ACC, Clinton Leeks, said the Government had decided to reappoint existing members first to avoid delaying the whole process. The Government intends to appoint new members to broaden the experience and expertise of the committee, which comprises professionals, academics and community leaders. Mr Leeks rejected the suggestion that the Chinese side was deliberately withholding its blessing because of the political row. ''The Chinese side has underlined the importance of the ACC,'' he said. Mr Leeks declined to reveal when the British side had begun consulting China on the appointments. Mr Wong said the late announcement of new members would not delay the work of the advisory body, adding that he believed there would be no problem in securing Chinese approval. The ACC was established in 1991 after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on the new airport projects. Henry Litton was the first member to resign from the 50-strong committee due to personal reasons. Lee Lin-sang, a local deputy to the National People's Congress, recently declined an offer to renew his term, saying the ACC was ineffective. Meanwhile, the Secretary for Works, James Blake, yesterday rejected claims that the Government had favoured British companies in the tendering of airport core projects. Speaking after a meeting with Chinese officials in Beijing, Mr Blake said the majority of the airport projects had been granted to Japanese companies. About 26 per cent of the contracts had been awarded to Japanese corporations while the British had won 15 per cent, he said after a 11/2-hour meeting with Chen Zuo'er, a department head of the State Council's Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office. Mr Blake said the Chinese side had not been concerned about the small number of contracts awarded to mainland-funded companies.